By Kingsley Omonobi
The Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria, DICON, has produced a low cost mechanical ventilator ‘DICOVENT’, capable of using electricity and rechargeable batteries if need be, to help in treatment of coronavirus patients.
Also produced by DICON using 100 per cent local content materials are Personnel Protective Equipment, PPEs, for health workers in the frontlines and high quality hand sanitisers known as ‘DICOSANZ’.
These breakthroughs were made known, yesterday, in Abuja in a joint media briefing addressed by the Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Major-General John Enenche, and Director-General, DICON, Major General Victor Ezugwu.
According to Major General Ezugwu, DICON has the capacity to produce 100 of the ventilators in a month, while it has capacity to mass produce the PPEs and hand sanitisers when required.
While noting that Kaduna State government, for instance, has ordered for thousands of the personnel protective equipment, PPEs, for its healthcare practitioners, the DICON DG said the organisation had the capacity, professionals and know-how to produce any of the items when needed.
Gen. Ezugwu disclosed that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 headed by Mr. Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and the Minister of Health, Prof. Osagie Ehanire, witnessed a physical presentation of the efficacy of the ventilators and the PPEs when he visited.
Consequently, the Presidential Task Force has directed DICON to forward a proposal for the task force to partner in the mass production of the COVID-19 ventilators and PPEs for use by isolation and treatment centers.
On his part, Major General John Enenche disclosed that the Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin, has directed all military formations across the country and those in theatres of operation to liaise with DICON for the procurement of the items as required.
Why bandits killed 47 in Katsina
Answering a question as to how bandits killed 47 people in Katsina State on Sunday when the military said its troops backed by air strikes killed some bandits in Katsina State, Enenche noted that while the location of the attacks were different, that of Sunday occurred following the bandits search for food.
“What happened and which was confirmed by the Police is that palliatives were shared to the people of the three communities. After sharing, bandits attacked the villages demanding for the foodstuff and other palliatives, which the villagers refused to give. That is why they resorted to killing the villagers and taking away the foodstuff and other items.”
No going back on offensive to wipe out Boko Haram
On reports that Shekau and Boko Haram commanders were making moves and contacting international NGOs to seek a ceasefire following the impending offensive by the Nigerian military to wipe them out, the coordinator said they were free to approach anybody to seek ceasefire but noted that the Nigerian Armed Forces were focused on achieving the objective, which is to wipe out Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists from Nigeria adding that there is no going back..